In an EngineerIT panel discussion about “Artificial Intelligence in Business: Balancing Risks and Rewards” with Archana Arakkal and Johan Steyn, it was agreed that the time frame could be anywhere between five and ten years.
Archana Arakkal is practice lead: intelligent data engineering at Synthesis and Johan Steyn is an artificial intelligence and automation thought leader. The discussion is now available on-line to listen to or download to share with colleagues.
Archana said there are a few steps to be addressed in the next five years if we are to figure out what AI can do, what the limitations are and reassuring people that it is not a terminator around the corner. We will still be figuring out what AI can do and what the benefits are, so maybe ten years is a more realistic time frame. Johan Steyn said: “I also have five to ten years in my head, but it all depends on what happens. If people see the benefits that AI will bring into their lives, comfort with the technology will increase but the converse is that if the victims of the biases affect us negatively, then it is an enemy to us. It however has the best benefit ever created for our children.
Many facets of AI are frankly discussed by the two panellists from the point of view of the benefits business can derive by embracing AI, as well as the pitfalls, in particular how to manage its impact on the workforce. The question of regulations is debated. Should AI be regulated, and by whom?
About the panellists
Johan Steyn is an artificial intelligence and automation thought leader and speaks globally at conferences on the Fourth Industrial Revolution and Emerging Technologies. In 2019 he received an award for Best AI and Robotics Management Consultant by Wealth & Finance magazine (UK). He is a research fellow at the School of Data Science and Computational Thinking at Stellenbosch University (South Africa) and an adjunct professor at the School of Business at Woxsen University (India). He is also chair of the special interest group on artificial intelligence and robotics with the IITPSA (Institue of Information Technology Professionals South Africa).
He is a published author who regularly contributes articles on thought leadership to well-known publications such as Business Day, the Sunday Times, Finweek, News24, ITWeb, Synapse and Brainstorm Magazine. He has participated in several EngineerIT panel discussions.
Archana Arakkal is currently working towards her PhD in the areas of privacy preserving AI and multi-agent reinforcement learning. She is seen as a thought leader for AI in Africa and has several machine learning community affiliations. She is a leader and specialist engineer within the data and AI practice of Synthesis. Challenging the impossible and making innovation possible when it is least expected and constantly striving to improve human lives is what drives her. She is passionate about women in tech, dancing and is an adrenalin junkie.